Loss and Grief

Loss and the Chronic or Terminally Ill

Australians, like Americans and their other Western counterparts, are living longer but suffering more chronic diseases. While the Australian boy born today can expect to live to 79.9 years and the Australian girl to 84 (the American statistic is similar), the odds are that they will be plagued by chronic illness, which will eventually kill them. Eighty percent of deaths in the United States now o... »

Counselling the Terminally Ill: Anxiety and Spirituality

For all the prevalence of chronic illness-becoming-terminal, clinicians note that few resources are available which address grief and loss in a chronic illness context. Moreover, numerous studies have shown that counsellors are uncomfortable dealing with grief- and loss-related concerns, particularly loss related to death. This article entertains the question of what philosophical or spiritual pre... »

Loss and Grief: Why We All Grieve Differently

Grief is the universal, instinctual and adaptive reaction to loss, and particularly, the loss of a loved one (Dialogues in clinical neuroscience, 2012). It is a natural response, and can be anything from missing out on a scholarship to loss of limbs through accident to loss of a car or other possessions through theft. Surely the most painful loss is that of someone we love through death. Loss is a... »

Grief and the Four Tasks of Mourning

Grief is the universal, instinctual and adaptive reaction to loss, and particularly, the loss of a loved one (Dialogues in clinical neuroscience, 2012). It is a natural response and can be anything from missing out on a scholarship to the loss of limbs through an accident to loss of a car or other possessions through theft. Surely the most painful loss is that of someone we love through death.... »

A Guide to Helping the Suicide-Bereaved

How can you best offer support to someone who is bereaved by suicide? What attitudes, translated into caring actions, can best facilitate the bereaved person’s coping in the immediate and short term, and their healing in the longer term? Because of the remaining societal stigma and also the lack of knowledge about how to be with the suicide-bereaved in a sensitive way, many friends and even family... »

Working with Loss and Grief in children

The death of a loved one is always difficult. For children, the death of a loved one can affect their sense of security. Like adults, children express loss by grieving and yet children may not demonstrate their grief openly as adults. Grief may affect their behaviour, the way in which they take in information, and their need for support. »

Complicated Grief

Historically, researchers have argued that complicated grief is an expression of a major depressive disorder or an anxiety-based disorder that has been triggered by a specific loss. More recently, researchers have concluded that grief symptoms only partially overlap with symptoms of depression and other DSM-IV-TR categories, such as anxiety and post traumatic stress disorder, and that although the... »

10 Guidelines for Grief Counselling

Whatever the circumstances of loss and grief, there are certain principles and procedures that contribute to the effectiveness of grief counselling. Some of the guidelines adapted from Worden (2005) are listed below. »

Theories of Loss and Grief

The loss of a loved one is a universal experience. Every person will experience loss and traumatic circumstances at some point in their lives. This experience has the potential to displace a person from their anticipated life course. Several models and theories that have attempted to explain the complex process of loss and grief. In this article, we explore three of these models... »